5 Team-Building Strategies that Every Great Leader Should Know 

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As a leader, assembling the right team is crucial to your success. Early in my career, I was drawn to hire people that did my previous job like I would have done the job. It made sense, if I had been successful hiring more like me would continue the formula. I realized early on that our team was last in innovation, last in performance and last in personal growth.  As I collaborated and connected with my fellow leaders, I realized the power behind an awesome team is about not only hiring diverse talent but creating an environment where everyone felt they could contribute their unique talents to the team purpose.   

High-performance teams don’t just happen. In order for your team to reach peak performance and deliver the most impressive results, you need more than a group of talented and capable individuals. You need a group of talented individuals who unite behind a shared vision of success and collaborate on a higher level to bring out the best in each other. 

Great Leaders create inclusive cultures that welcome all team members so that they feel a sense of belonging while honoring the uniqueness of everyone to ensure they are valued and significant team members.  Their contributions are fully taken advantage of and reflect the depth and breadth of experience, knowledge and capabilities that they bring to the team.

The right combination of individuals will create a synergy that will help you accomplish your team’s purpose. Below we’ve outlined 5 of the most effective strategies to implement for a team that is happy, high performing, and delivers results. 


5 Team-Building Ideas

1: Inspire Your Team with a  Clear Purpose and Communicate with Vision

A clear purpose is about creating a long term vision for connecting your work to a higher cause. Purpose is never a self benefiting result like profit but a benefit to the people that you serve and invites and inspires others to join. Profit is a result of successfully impacting your purpose. People feel inspired to connect and pursue a future that doesn’t exist right now. 

Communicating with vision comes easier for some leaders than others. However, all leaders have the ability to communicate about the future. A great vision has 2 parts: the future state that inspires new possibilities and the individual contributions of each member to bring that purpose to life. 

2: Create Winnable Moments with Goals and Roles 

A purpose and cause are inspirational infinite journeys. A leader creates winnable goals along the journey that show success and guides team members to contribute through their unique contributions. Having a clear goal the entire team is working towards will prevent loss of focus, wasted time, task confusion, and personal conflicts. Clearly defined goals provide direction. With clear goals, every individual understands where you are and where you are going to bring a vision to fruition. A common goal also unites the team, as everyone works together holistically to accomplish each task in the big picture.

Clearly defined goals also help establish clearly defined roles. An effective leader will create an environment that sets the team up for success by having clearly defined roles. Every team member should have a clear picture of what their role looks like and a thorough understanding of what their responsibilities are. When roles are properly established, members of the group can start to cooperate and build solid relationships.

3. Embrace Collaboration

High-performance teams embrace collaboration with curiosity, liberate their thoughts, and challenge the thinking of each team member. This allows them to discover new possibilities together. When this expands into customer engagement, a stronger partnership will form.

As a leader, you evoke action through conversations that encourage everyone to think of solutions in a new way. You ask questions without preconceived answers, opening the door for advanced dialogue with powerful questions and deeper listening. Leaders are a catalyst for collaboration. Related Exercise: Team-building exercise to Inspires Collaboration

 4: Create Open Lines of Communication

Communication is the single most powerful predictor of team building success or failure. Foster an environment where transparency, accessibility, and open lines of communication are encouraged. When team members feel like their voices are heard and their ideas, opinions, and insights are valued, they become more focused and motivated. 

5: Celebrate  and Motivate through Acknowledgements Celebrate and motivate your team with recognition.

Recognition has powerful benefits including increased job satisfaction and confidence. Nobody wants to feel like their hard work goes unnoticed, and failing to recognize accomplishments  kills engagement. Once the “what’s the point of working so hard if nobody notices” thoughts emerge, your team is in trouble. 

Recognition is about affirming and validating each person for their unique gifts that lead to collaborative results. It is more meaningful to be valued for who you are rather than what you did.  Recognizing & rewarding employees for their hard work will encourage strong and consistent performance. Incentives that increase motivation are key because they build a team member’s confidence in their abilities. It enables them to see their contribution as an asset. 

 People want to feel valued and appreciated for what they bring to the table. When they do, they become more deeply committed to their work, engaged with their teammates, and dedicated to the overall mission and vision of the company. 

6: Conflict Management

Conflict in the workplace is natural. Conflict is the birthplace of innovation. Whenever a group of people works closely together over long periods of time, obstacles will naturally arise. Good leaders are  being equipped with the right tools to deal with conflict in a positive way. Our natural tendency is to create peace and shut down conflict.. If you shut down conflict you shut down different perspectives and limit innovation  on your team.  Open lines of communication ensure everyone feels heard. The most effective and long-standing teams work through their disagreements instead of being divided by them.This conflict is healthy. Here are the keys to promoting healthy conflict.  

  • Handle in the moment (Q4)
  • Make it safe to talk about anything
  • Stay in dialogue when you are angry, hurt, or scared? (Label It. )
  • Speak Persuasive not abrasive…
  • Listen when others blow up or clam up? 


Team Building Activities and Beyond

At COA, we can help you hone your leadership skills so you can be most effective and impactful in your role. Our team-building ideas will give you some great tools to use in creating a synergistic and highly productive team. Contact Us to learn more about what we can offer you today!


About The Author

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Heather Evans is a guide and coach for professionals looking to maximize their individual, team, and business potential.

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